I never really remember my parents talking about ‘quality time’. This little piece of modern-day jargon masquerading it seems to me as wisdom was the creation of my generation.
It came about as we started to over schedule our lives to such an extent; we thought it would be a good idea to pencil in some ‘quality time’ with the family.
Reality just doesn’t seem to want to cooperate with our need to manage time. It seems the real quality of time we spend together is often the by-product of simply being available.
I mentioned last week that I was off to the Indy-car race with my son. We don’t get to see each other much as he is very busy these days. This tradition of going to the races dates back 23+ years when as it turns out I was the one very caught up in work.
The happy accident of the car race is that we get to spend three days together and talk about nothing.
On Thursday this week, my wife, daughter and I decided at the last minute to make the trek to Rochester New York (about three hours away) to catch a concert by the boys from Newfoundland who play in a band called Great Big Sea.
It turns out that Great Big Sea is my daughter’s version of the Indy-car race. She just loves these guys and their music. She has been attending their concerts since 2001 and was at their show last Saturday. They found out the lads would be performing in Rochester the following Thursday at something called the “Concert in the Park.”
The cost of a ticket to see them was two bucks. That’s right two whole American dollars.
After debating it for a while we decided why not just go and check it out. We booked a room on Hotwire, which in itself is an adventure. You get a great rate, but you don’t find out the name of the hotel until you confirm your non-refundable reservation.
We ventured to Rochester for the first time and came upon the ‘park’ where the concert was to be held. It turns out Riverside Park is actually a ‘PARK’ing lot! Oh yea did I mention it was about 100 degrees outside with the humidity!!!
At first, blush it looked like we had made a terrible mistake. We certainly weren’t going to need the blankets we brought to sit on or the bug spray. (Perhaps not needing bug spray was a good thing.)
We checked into our very nice four-star hotel, and surprisingly, we could see the ‘park’ from our window. We determined that Great Big Sea was coming on at 8:15 PM, so we timed our arrival at the ‘park’ perfectly.
You can likely guess the rest of the story. It turned out to be a great night.
You could get a cold Genesee beer (I must have seen a thousand Genie advertisements as a kid in Toronto) and the music was outstanding. It made you wish the band would play all night and that the fun would never end.
It was a slice of quality time that is now a memory. There was no good reason to go to Rochester. It didn’t make any sense because the girls had just been to see the band, and it was really hot weather.
In the end, however, it was more than worth it, and it was like the time when old Pat Murphy died, and it was a “night I will never forget”!